Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Burlap Wreath #3: "M" monogram fall wreath with orange accent

This is the 3rd installment of my burlap wreath making spree. I figured that an orange accent ribbon would really pop against the blue door.
It's the sibling of the "P" monogram wreath that I gave to my parents.
Materials:
30ish ft of burlap, 24 ft of accent ribbon that's wide, monogram letter, medium metal wreath, wire, wire cutter, and two accent fall pieces to garnish the wreath.
Fun stuff. Plus, if you scour Pinterest, you will come up with a trillion reasons to make more for every occasion!

Have you seen my other two burlap wreaths?

Burlap Wreath #2: "P" monogram wreath with green accent

My parents watch my boys twice a week while I teach piano lessons in the evening. As a small thank you gesture, I decided to make them this wreath that I'm absolutely in love with.
Materials:
30ish ft of burlap, 24 ft of accent ribbon that's wide, monogram letter, medium metal wreath, wire, wire cutter, and two accent fall pieces to garnish the wreath.
It was really hard to give this one up, but I did buy enough material to create a similar one, which you will find in the next post installment.

Need more wreath eye candy?

Burlap Wreath #1: year-round monogram wreath

Here's a confession: this is the first post (of three) of a new addiction in my craft world... burlap wreaths. I used this video to help me figure out how to wrap the burlap onto the metal frame. Before this project, I didn't even know they made metal frames for wreaths!

Materials: 
40 ft of burlap, burlap bow, monogram letter, accent ribbon, flowers, medium metal wreath frame, wreath wire (I used medium weight beading wire) and a wire cutter.
Half way done wrapping the burlap.

My door is blue, so I wove in an accent denim ribbon.
Need more eye candy? 

Friday, September 23, 2016

A Knitter Skill Unlocked: the Tubular Cast-On (with 1x1 ribbing)

Happy fall! I'm am literally a couple of inches away from finishing one of my twin's Flax Light sweater, but couldn't resist the charm that pumpkin spice yarn had to offer, so I've decided to have a "screw it!" type of attitude with project monogamy and just cast on for my adult Flax Light sweater.

I've heard on podcasts that tubular cast-ons are the way to go for ribbing. Not only is it stretchy, but the folded edge makes it look clean and professional looking. I watched Eunny Jang's video and have followed the instructions to a "T," even though it started my ribbing off with a purl stitch (I later moved the last knit stitch to the beginning of the round because I'm OCD'ing about keeping my ribbing 'k1,p1'). Side note- Eunny Jang's blog (she's stopped blogging on her personal site ever since she was offered a job at Knitting Daily) inspired me to create this blog in 2006...


In a nutshell: the process involved knitting stockinette st from waste yarn for several rows, knitting from your main yarn for several rows, and after picking up the first st bumps from your main yarn (see the video for this)...you CUT away the waste yarn. Eek!!

So, for your entertainment, I have documented my first time casting out Tubular Method:
4 waste yarn stockinette rows and 5 main yarn rows before tubular effect. You cast on half the amount needed.
You purl a live st, then pick up the first main color "bump," until you have double the cast-on amount.
So far, so good!

The whole needle completed! Time to grab the scissors! Eek!
You cut away the waste yarn underneath.
It acutally looks more like this mess.
You join the round, which will leave you with this nice little gap. I just sewed the waste yarn into it and it closed it right up. Next time, I will try to join the waste yarn in the round right off the bat.

And that's all folks! It was pretty painless and nothing unraveled. Just double check before you make the first snip that you have knit into ALL of the bumps from that main color's first row.

I'm onto the yoke now. Have yourself a great weekend!

Thursday, September 08, 2016

FO: Bee Stitch Dish Cloth and some WIPs

I came across the Bee Stitch on the internet about a week ago, and couldn't resist giving it a try for some fall dish cloths. The Stitch is really beautiful...it's a shame my camera really couldn't capture it's real texture essence in this color.
The Bee Stich is mostly just gartering. The only difference is the places where you see the deep V's, you knit below that stitch. So, in 4 whole rows in the pattern, you knit below a stich every other stitch for two rds and the rest is simply knit straight.
I made a Hobby Lobby trip to find fall colored cotton yarn for this project. I will knit one Bee Stitch Cloth per color. Hobby Lobby was running a sale on a lot of yarns and these were under two bucks each. The only downside is that the yarn is rather splitty.
The first one was knit to a 9x9 inch size. I might cut down 3 sts for the next two colors. Maybe.

Pattern: Bee Stitch Cloth (my own)
Yarn: Crafter's Secret Cotton (a little more than half a ball used--approx 70 yds used)
Needles: US 7 

I have been really keeping busy knitting while the boys are in Kindergarten. I am slowing working on my Seed Stitch Bath Rug that will look like this when it's finished.  It's so large right now (and the needles are a beast), that I am pushing myself to knit 4 rows each day so that it eventually gets finished. It's really just a back-burner project. 

I am still working on my carnival sock. Another back-burner project for my purse, but almost done. I have about 3 more inches before the toe decreases.

I am also working on the first Flax Light sweater for twin #1:
I am itching to start my own adult Flax Light in a pumpkin colored yarn that I recently bought in sport weight. HOWEVER, I should be finishing this fall cardigan though!
This is an old picture. I left off last year around the hips. It will have afterthought pockets and a button band or zipper installed. I haven't decided yet.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

WIP: Flax Light #1

Here's my progress on the Light Flax sweater. I'm about to save the sleeve sts so to work on the body. Before I made that commitment, I asked my trusty mannequin to try it on to see if it fit properly. It looks great, right?
The first thing out of this little guy's mouth? You guessed it! 
"It's itchy, it's itchy, it's itchy!!!"
Sigh.
It makes me want to throw this beautiful WIP across the room. Are they going to even wear this? Am I wasting my time? I had my heart set on natural fibers for this project (it's Paton's Kroy Sock yarn).
Does anyone else have this problem with children?
 
I plan to have them wear a collared shirt underneath, but I pray that they will actually wear this lovely knit because it would be such a waste of a good project and yarn. I'm even thinking of making myself a pumpkin spice colorway version for this fall.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Flax Light #1 (and the Kindergarten send-off)

It's a happy and sad time at our household. My baby boys have finally gone off to Kindergarten. I am so conflicted--I have been waiting for the day when I get uninterrupted free time to catch up on work, piano practice, cleaning, knitting, etc...but I have always been around my boys, and it will be hard to let them grow up in school and not around me now. Between me teaching 3 evenings a week, and their after school taekwondo activity, our time is much more limited than ever. They are going to grow up so fast now!

I have decided to knit the boys the Flax Light sweater to wrap them in warmth from my love and stitches this fall. One will be knit with Paton's Kroy Socks in the "flax" colorway, and the other with Lion Brand's Sock-Ease yarn in the "Snow Cone" colorway. I'm already in love with the interesting garter sleeve panel texture. Such a simple element, yet sleek.
The boys did not cry or whine or plead me to keep them home. They happily went off on that yellow school bus that they've been waiting to ride for years. I had half a mind to follow the school bus all the way to school, but decided against it.
My boys are growing up so fast, but still have baby faces in my eyes. How can they be old enough for a 6 hour school? Between that and the bus rides, that's 7 hours a day.
I wish them all the happiness school can offer. I wish that they will enjoy it as much as I did as a girl, and that they are granted every opportunity in life that they set their hearts and mind to. Mommy loves ya, babes!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

FO: Skimmer No-Show Socks

I am really excited to blog about these no show socks with this brick backdrop before the end of my trip at the Wilstem Ranch. You can read a little about my trip this week at the historic ranch here. The camera caught the light and dust particles in such a magical way. It almost reminds me of a Cinderella-esque scene.
Yarn: under 1 skein Patons Stretch Socks in the colorway "Sugar"
Needles: Size US 1.5 (2.5mm) circular needles; magic loop method\
Start Date: 6/5/16  Completed: 8/12/16 
 I plan on knitting more of these in the future. They are quick and satisfying little socks for Peds, or shoes that you don't want to show your socks. Next time, I would knit the ribbing on smaller needles though, to tighten up the grip a bit more.

I am continuing working on knitting my other Carnival Sock WIP before we head back home tomorrow. We went to the Marengo Caves in Indiana today, so keep your eye out for another post soon!

Friday, August 12, 2016

FO: Candy Corn Djevellue #3

I am currently out in southern Indiana near French Lick and Paoli at the historic Wilstem Ranch for a family reunion. We were welcoming two new cousins this year, one of which I have not knit for yet. During our 6 hour drive, I raced against time to knit a Candy Corn version of Baby Djevellue that I knit for my twin boys in 2010. It is adorable knit in stripes, but extra adorable knit to look like a candy corn!
My kids in their Candy Cane hats (my modified Djevellue): Jake and Sam, Fall 2010

I completed the hat 1 hour from arriving at the ranch, so I decided to go for the gold and knit a matching pair of mittens. 
I cast on 26 sts on size US 6 needles using yellow yarn, then knit a 1x1 ribbing and switched to orange for the stockinette stitch main body. When I was ready to decrease, I decreased once in orange, then switched to white until I had 6 sts left. I made two sets of double decreases, which reduced my stitch count to 2 sts. I just drew the strand through those and made a knot.

I was running low on time, so I just braided the strands of yarn together instead of making an I-cord for the mitts. 
Baby Max is only a few months old, but when Halloween rolls around, I think his head will fill the hat better.
Mitt Pattern: my own
Yarn: Caron Simply Soft in yellow, orange and white
Needles: size US 6
Hat Cast on: 79 sts    Mitt cast on: 26 sts
Mods: extending the brim, 3 colored striping to look like candy corn, extended tip
Started: 8/7/16   Completed: 8/7/16

I had a fun time taking photos of my completed projects from this trip on the brick floor, desks or chests for these items in the den of the Wilstem Annex house. If you click on that link, you can read more about the ranch, and how president Roosevelt and famous music artists lodged at this historic 1910 house (that was later extended to fit larger groups). The whole house is filled with antiques and such to fit the early 1900's theme. It's expensive (and we have not done this), but there is ziplining, horseback riding and elephants on the ranch property.

There was an error in this gadget